Office of House Bill AnalysisH.B. 2822
By: Deshotel
Judicial Affairs


In past sessions, the legislature had changed the fee schedules of criminal
and civil courts from scaled fees to flat fees.  Prior to the 76th
Legislature, probate courts continued to use a scaled-fee system.  The
continuation of scaled fees in the probate courts would have increased the
costs to the offices of probate clerks.  In addition, it was believed that
flat fees were more efficient to administer. 

H.B. 2822 updates the Local Government Code to provide that, consistent
with criminal and civil courts, a probate court may administer a flat fee


It is the opinion of the Office of House Bill Analysis that this bill does
not expressly delegate any additional rulemaking authority to a state
officer, department, agency, or institution. 


SECTION 1.  Amends Section 118.052, Local Government Code, as follows:

Sec. 118.052.  FEE SCHEDULE.  Increases certain fees a county clerk must
collect for services rendered relating to probate original action: probate
of a will with independent executor, administration with will attached,
administration of an estate, guardianship or receivership of an estate, or
muniment of title is increased from $35 to $40; community survivors is
increased from $20 to $40; small estates is increased from $10 to $40;
declarations, rather than affidavits, of heirship is increased from $10 to
$40; and additional, special fee is increased from $3 to $5.  Eliminates
certain fees for services rendered relating to a pending probate action,
but establishes the following fees in that area: filing an inventory and
appraisement after the 120th day after the date of the initial filing of
the action ($25); filing annual or final account of estate ($25); filing
application for sale of real or personal property ($25); and filing annual
or final report of guardian of a person ($10).  Increases the fee for
adverse probate action from $35 to $40.      

SECTION 2.  Amends Section 118.056, Local Government Code, by deleting
Subsections (a) and (b), regarding fees for services in pending probate
action and the fee for filing a document.  Requires that each fee under
Section 118.052(2)(B) be paid in cash.   

SECTION 3.  Effective date: September 1, 1999.

SECTION 4.  Emergency clause.